Now that the turkey is gone, the remainder of the holiday season and more treats and temptations loom before us. It is easy to get into a cycle of guilt simply for enjoying the bounty of the holidays. Wouldn’t it be nice if we could indulge and not let it make us feel bad that we don’t look like a supermodel? For some reason, hearing a celebrity admit that her figure is less-than-perfect after having children is liberating. It’s as if the unspoken rules of how we are supposed to look might be a farce after all. Here is a snippet from an interview Jennifer Garner recently did on the Ellen DeGeneres Show:
“I get congratulated all the time by people that I know, saying, ‘I hear you’re pregnant!’ You know, this one woman who had babysat for us said, ‘OMG! I can’t wait for baby No. 4!’ and I thought, ‘What is going on?’ So I asked around and apparently I have a baby bump. And I’m here to tell you that I do—I do!” But before popping bottles to celebrate a new Garner-Affleck offspring, the mom explains that just because she has a baby bump doesn’t mean that she’s pregnant. “I am not pregnant, but I have had three kids and there is a bump,” she explained. “From now on ladies, I will have a bump. And it will be my baby bump. And let’s just all settle in and get used to it. It’s not going anywhere. I have a bump. Its name is Violet, Sam, Sera.”
It’s true. Our bodies change with time and with each subsequent child we have. I remember after having my first son the challenge I had finding something to wear to a holiday party. Somehow, I didn’t think maternity pants, even though they had a lovely drawstring, were going to cut it. I did find something eventually and then proceeded to complain to a friend, who also recently had a baby, that I wasn’t thrilled with the way I looked. She responded by saying, “You look great for your age, for just having a baby and you are healthy.” When I looked at myself from a vantage point of these factors, I actually looked pretty decent. I was no longer 22, I had a baby at home that I loved, and I wasn’t still wearing maternity pants, well, at least not as often.
As you get yourself ready this holiday season for whatever events you have ahead, you could either evaluate yourself against supermodel standards, or you can lace up your drawstring pants (holiday themed, of course) and have a good time regardless.
Personally, I think you look fabulous just as you are.
written by Diana DeVaul, MSW and Parent
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